“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.”
– John Lubbock
Know what’s amazing, kittens? Vision!
No, I haven’t cracked or anything, bear with me.
My vision has never been spectacular and I’ve had periods throughout my life where things got weird optically, but it was university that really killed me. I think it was computer screens, dim lecture halls, and horrible powerpoint presentations on bad projectors that did it. Christmas break of sophmore year, I believe, I went home to England and got a pair of really nice glasses in a great shade of red so I could see the blackboards. I remember putting them on for the first time and the shock of realizing that the world wasn’t soft focus and fuzzy, it was full of sharp edges and bright breaks between colors. Looking around made frightened for a second that I could cut myself on leaves. Where had all of this been hiding?
Glasses perched firmly on face, I considered the matter closed. Unfortunately my eyes didn’t. Slowly the sharp bright world has needed more effort to stick around. At first I only needed my glasses to see things that were far away. Then the next year I needed them to slightly closer, and so forth. For about the past year I’ve needed them to watch TV.
So on Saturday I threw in the towel and got fitted for contacts and again went through the dizzying experience of discovering that the world looks differently than the reality I’ve been living with – and it isn’t framed in a rectangle of black. The mountains looked like they could slice and I could drive without hunting for face gear. I can read the clock on the microwave from the couch. I could read signs across the street without squinting. I’ve been kicking myself for not considering contacts earlier ever since.
It’s amazing how we can get used to things that don’t seem like a big deal until we take the trouble to fix them. It’s always good to be reminded that there’s a technicolor, HD world on the other side of only a little bit of bother.